Court Suspends Controversial Dam Project in Chile

Posted June 20th, 2011 at 8:30 pm (UTC-5)
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Environmentalists in Chile won a huge victory Monday when a court suspended a huge dam project in Patagonia.

The plans had sparked massive and sometime violent protests. The appeals court put the project on hold while it examines the arguments from both sides.

A Chilean and Italian consortium plans to build five dams in two river valleys in the Patagonian wilderness of southwestern Chile.

President Sebastian Pinera backs the dam project, saying it would generate badly needed power to help support Chile's economy and help meet growing demands for electricity.

Environmentalists say the dams would destroy pristine forests, glaciers, and lakes. They accuse the government of not thoroughly reviewing the project before approving it.